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College...please tell me I'm not alone here...


Will you be paying for your children's college?  

  1. 1. Will you be paying for your children's college?

    • Yes, our children are entitled to it.
      49
    • No, our children will have to earn their way through it.
      122
    • Obligatory Other.
      174


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How many are going to let their children pay their own way.

 

Growing up, it was sink or swim. Mom and Stepdad, even with their Vet status, didn't have money for college (and they were saving it for their son, not me). In fact, the government told them that they could afford my brother's education, so they went nearly 2million into debt for his education and living expenses (including shacked up girlfriend). When I've attended college, several times in bits and pieces, I've busted my rear on grades and took no more than I could afford. We don't have money to send our kids anywhere and I don't have money for extra tutors (don't get me started...real life conversation with a friend recently).

 

Sorry, my kids will have to apply for scholarships, grants, financial aid, and work. They are welcome to stay home in order to attend school. But we won't be putting them through school.

 

Please see post #30 for clarification on the term "entitled"...it was used for a reason. Most that have chosen other because of that term, voted correctly. There are those that feel it is an entitlement. Those that fall in between, please use other. :) Many have explained their position well and I appreciate that :)

Edited by mommaduck
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I voted 'other.' DH & I have some savings specifically set aside for "getting started money" for the DC. Whether that translates into college money for them, or helping them get settled into adulthood, down payment help for house/car, contributing to a wedding or two.... We'll play it by ear when we get there. We'll contribute whatever we're able, but we probably won't be able to pay for complete college educations for either of them, so they will likely have to contribute via scholarship, working, loans... whatever they have to do, if they want to go to college.

 

I also don't believe that every person has to go to college. Someone has to be a carpenter, an electrician, a plumber... hell, a pizza delivery guy, for that matter. So.... Yeah.

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We've told The Kid we will be glad to help him as much as we can when it comes to finding grants, scholarships, etc. He's welcome to live at home for free while he's a student. We'd support him in taking a year or more off or going directly for what he wants.

 

What we will not do is give him a free ride. We love him enough to want him to appreciate his higher education, including the financial education he'll be getting at the same time.

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I voted other. It's largely going to depend on where the kids want to go to school. I will encourage them to apply for scholarships and grants, get jobs, etc., but we're socking some money away to help them get through. They are by no means entitled to it, but I want to help at least a little bit, even if all we're able to save is enough to pay for the meal plan!

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Our children will have to pay their own way. We are more than willing to help out when we can but that's all we'll be able to do.

 

It was the same way with my parents. They'd send money toward my bill whenever they had a bit extra or would send me a little bit of money to help pay for books.

 

That is the sacrifice my parents made in order to have my mom stay home and it is the same sacrifice we are having to make.

 

Even if I could give my children a free ride, I wouldn't. At least not completely. I think there are benefits to having to work your way through college. The students I saw get into the most trouble (academically and socially) were the kids whose parents paid for everything.

 

I worked my way through private university and thankfully also had some scholarship money.

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While we are doing our best to provide our kids with resources for college, I don't necessarily think they are "entitled to it."

 

My daughter earned a scholarship worth roughly half of her tuition based on her test scores. We are paying for the rest. We paid some out of pocket as we could along the way, but there is also a nice chunk in loan money. Some of the loans are in her name and some in ours, but we plan to pay them all, if we can manage it.

 

She is aware that, ultimately, if something were to happen and we could not keep up the payments, the loans that are in her name would have to be her responsibility.

 

Currently, the plan is for my son to go to college in state, which will make him eligible for Florida's Bright Futures scholarship program. We consider that he will have earned whatever portion of his expenses that covers, and we will contribute the rest if we are able to do so.

 

If I had kids who were not hard workers, or a child who didn't care about college or wasn't willing to jump through the hoops necessary to get there and to be successful, I might not be so willing to go into debt to cover the costs. And if we were worse off financially and it would be a real strain or take things away from younger children, we would not do so, either. However, the truth is that I have bright, capable, hard-working students who care about and will benefit from higher education. And, while it does pinch, we can afford to pay the costs. So, we do.

Edited by Jenny in Florida
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I voted entitled to it BECAUSE ds had worked so hard and with such attention during his high school years that I felt he had earned that opportunity. Turned out that he got a full ride but even if he had not, we would have stepped up and helped out. OUr parents gave us the gift of a college education and we felt our ds deserved the same. Granted, we are only talking about one kid here so that makes a huge difference in today's economy and with the labor market stalled like it is. Still think a kid who diligently applies himself academically deserves a helping hand if at all possible.

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Definitely other. Dh and I both had to work our way through college and take out loans. It certainly made us appreciate it more. We have started savings plans for college, but there will not be anywhere near enough money to pay for it all. They will have to work, and if necessary take out loans for whatever isn't covered.

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In theory, I'd love to put my kids through college. In reality, though, I won't, for a variety of reasons.

 

First, I simply can't. I'm up to my ears in debt from my own education and will likely be dead before it's paid off. Ugh.

 

Second, I think it would be the ruin of my relationship with my kids, especially my now 15 year old. In my mind, she would screw around and get bad grades, or drop out, and I'd be out the cash, and I'd resent her for it.

 

So...they're going to have to figure it out on their own, like I did.

Edited by QValencia
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My children will also be applying for any and all finacial aid they can get. We have not been able to save any money for college. We work just to keep food on the table, clothes on their back and lights in the house.

 

But that being said, I won't be just telling them they are completely on their own.

 

My own parents did that to me. Not one helping hand in selecting a college, not one helping hand in filling out paperwork, or making any plans (yet their income affected my finanicial aid, or lack there of :( ). I too busted my behind to get to college, to pay for it, struggled to survive while in college, and had to start and stop several times. I have thousands of dollars in college loans still.

 

I won't be doing that to my children. Our plan is that they get all finanicial aid they can, and any fees still left, they will be expected to work a part-time job in college and we will help out to our full extent that we can. I hope that by all of us pitching in and making wise choices on their college choice (ie state, local, versus out of state), the child and DH and I, the child can get through college without incurring huge loan debt. I do feel it is a family plan, a joint effort, not all on us, and not all on the child.

 

Another thing that we do differently than both DH and my parents is teach financial responsibility from the beginning, instead of sending them out in the real world at 18 with not a clue about finances.

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I'm an "other". We will help as much as we can but they will also utilize financial aid and work. My parents helped as much as they were able and a lot of the time that meant showing up with a car full of groceries. My mom tried to go at least twice a month and drop off groceries. They also tried to put aside extra money to help with books every semester.

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Not one helping hand in selecting a college, not one helping hand in filling out paperwork, or making any plans (yet their income affected my finanicial aid, or lack there of :( ).

 

My parents did this to me too. I never took out student loans, but I was in errears several time with paying for tuition, which meant I couldn't do things like use the language lab, which was required for some classes. It really hurt my ability to earn good grades.

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I answered "yes", but I think the word "entitled" is strong. I do feel an obligation to help my kids because 1. I am in a financial position to do so, 2. I value a college education for them, and 3. I want them to be able to take advantage of all their college has to offer without shifting their focus to earning money right away.

 

That having been said, I will not finance a college education for purposes of playing around (but a certain amount of growing up and finding oneself is permitted). My kids have to be maintaining reasonable gradepoints and making progress toward a degree. Oldest dd will take 5 years, middle dd 4.

 

I am satisfied that my dc are living their college lives appropriately. I am careful not to try to control with the pursestrings. :D

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Other. If we have the money we will pay. We plan to have some set aside. However, we won't go into debt for it. Any loans will be the student's own loans, not ours. Ideally they will have substantial scholarships, and we will be able to pay the remainder of tuition and board, and they will work part time for spending money. That is what my parents did with me.

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I voted yes but I think the wording of the poll indicates your bias. I will be paying because I want to, not because I feel they are entitled. I will not pay for a four year long party, but if they are serious about taking advantage of the opportunity, I will make sure money is not an issue for them.

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My children will also be applying for any and all finacial aid they can get. We have not been able to save any money for college. We work just to keep food on the table, clothes on their back and lights in the house.

 

But that being said, I won't be just telling them they are completely on their own.

 

My own parents did that to me. Not one helping hand in selecting a college, not one helping hand in filling out paperwork, or making any plans (yet their income affected my finanicial aid, or lack there of :( ). I too busted my behind to get to college, to pay for it, struggled to survive while in college, and had to start and stop several times. I have thousands of dollars in college loans still.

 

I won't be doing that to my children. Our plan is that they get all finanicial aid they can, and any fees still left, they will be expected to work a part-time job in college and we will help out to our full extent that we can. I hope that by all of us pitching in and making wise choices on their college choice (ie state, local, versus out of state), the child and DH and I, the child can get through college without incurring huge loan debt. I do feel it is a family plan, a joint effort, not all on us, and not all on the child.

 

Another thing that we do differently than both DH and my parents is teach financial responsibility from the beginning, instead of sending them out in the real world at 18 with not a clue about finances.

 

This is another thing DH & I feel strongly about. I had no idea how to manage money at all, let alone the knowledge that the second I hit 18, every aspect of my finances would be my responsibility. I was responsible for my tuition, loans, and such. My parents didn't contribute, but their income prevented me from getting financial aid..... Yeah.

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I don't see anything wrong with your outlook, but the practicality of yoru plan may depend on the specifics of your income and asset levels (the lower, the better, for the purposes of getting aid and such). I was under the assumption that most kids apply for aid, though the degree to which they receive it obviously varies.

 

When I went to school, my parents helped a smitch, though I had a sizable scholarship to a selective school that was combination merit/need. At the time, it seemed like the expected family contribution was relatively accurate for my family - there was significant sacrifice for my parents and myself, but they managed just fine (4 kids). Work-study was part of my package. I always worked in college, often more than one job.

 

These days, I'm afraid, things might be a little different - anecdotally, it sounds as though the EFC is not always feasible (I couldn't even begin to guess about the specifics as to how/why).

 

DH and I are in a different position from my parents (and indeed from most parents). My kids will not have any aid available to them due to our level of income/assets. We have six kids. Accordingly, the vast majority of our savings are in college 529 accounts. Due to our situation, if we want our kids to go to college (and we certainly do; it's not optional in our family), we cannot let them "sink or swim" financially for college - we must contribute. College would not be possible for them without our help even if they do find non-need-based merit scholarships (not something I'd be counting on).

 

My advice is to approach the college question with as much information as you can get your hands on. Go to websites that calculate expected family contribution so you and your child have a complete understanding of your child's situation if, for example, there is an expected family contribution that your child will have to come up with on their own. I think it's very important to be realistic.

 

The loan discussion is a whole 'nother ball of wax.

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I voted other. We will pay, if we have the funds, but like another poster said, we won't go into debt for it. We also hope that Dd will have a strong financial education and will be going to school to further her life. Not to party and have fun (although I want that to be a small part of it).

 

I don't think kids are "entitled" to it. But certainly if a family can do something to ease the financial burden of college, I think they should.

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Frankly I think the word "entitled" will skew your results so I will not participate in your poll.

 

I too worked very hard to fund my own college education. This is one reason that we assist my son with his so that he does not have to live the sleep deprived life I led.

 

Secondly, we have the resources to assist him. When the feds assisted me with my undergraduate education (via a grant), it was money well spent. My husband and I have paid substantially into federal coffers since. Plus we have made the possibility of a college education a priority for our son by our own economic choices.

 

In years of discussion on this board, we have seen that college is essentially family culture for some of us. For others it is not. There is no one correct path for every family or every child.

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Once I read about those inner city neighborhoods where someone was inspired to pay the tuition of an entire class, and the stunning difference in outcomes for those children through high school, I was indelibly hooked on paying for college for my DD and making sure that she knew I would.

 

However, WOW, it has gotten expensive! I saw the Admissions Director from USC speak last week, and he handed out their enrollment brochures. Cost of a year? $57,000! DD does not have a blank check, and I certainly don't have that kind of money. Still, ideally she will pick a good university and we will pay for it.

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I really, really wanted to pay the full bill for my kids' university. We are going to try to pay half. I sure hope it happens.

 

My ds is not entitled, but he is going to be punished because we live in a high cost of living areas and make too much money for need-based scholarships. I don't want him punished that way, and so we are trying very hard to help.

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Our children will have to earn their way through it. We simply can't afford college. We will, however, do all we can to help them. We live near a college town so they're welcome to live at home rent-free as long as they are either working or going to school . . . no bums :D. We'll also do what we can to carry them on auto and health insurance, help with textbooks, car up-keep, meals, etc.

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I voted 'other.' DH & I have some savings specifically set aside for "getting started money" for the DC. Whether that translates into college money for them, or helping them get settled into adulthood, down payment help for house/car, contributing to a wedding or two.... We'll play it by ear when we get there. We'll contribute whatever we're able, but we probably won't be able to pay for complete college educations for either of them, so they will likely have to contribute via scholarship, working, loans... whatever they have to do, if they want to go to college.

:iagree:, but not the loans.

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I voted yes but I think the wording of the poll indicates your bias. I will be paying because I want to, not because I feel they are entitled. I will not pay for a four year long party, but if they are serious about taking advantage of the opportunity, I will make sure money is not an issue for them.

No, actually I worded it that way intentionally and not due to my bias. I used to live around people that really thought that way and would word it exactly like that. They believed that ALL children are entitled to a college education, paid for by the parent, and any parent that didn't provide that was irresponsible. Yes, these same people looked down their noses at my husband who busted his tail in the factories making refridgerators and cheeses that they bought, warehouses that held all the cleaners they used daily, and building the roads that they drove on.

 

I appreciate those that have stated that they will help as they are financially able (heaven knows, if I had the money, I would do the same!), but don't feel their children are entitled to it unless they earned it. Thank you for responding and explaining. I voted no due to our inability to pay for college. Other is for the appropriate range of in between ;)

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I will be paying for as much as I possibly can.

 

I come at this from another viewpoint. I actually put myself through university as a single parent. My parents did not help a bit with college and I put it off. I got pregnant, divorced and went back to school.

 

I did it but ended up with lots of student loan debt that kills me.

 

I will not pay for every dime as I think that kids need to have some investment in education.

 

At this point in time, a college degree is what a high school diploma used to be. I have no clue how I will afford it as I'm on a very fixed income. She will get grants and such.

 

I don't understand putting so much effort into giving a child a K-12 education and then not putting that same effort into college. Some work during college is good. But, many colleges require internships, etc that are difficult to complete.

Edited by YLVD
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It won't be an option, they'll have to pay their own way, the same way Dh and I had to.

 

Hopefully they will be able to have some savings built up before they get there-- DH grew up on a farm and had earned a chunk of cash for college by raising animals and such, and I hope our kids can do the same.

 

I agree with Daisy, there are benefits to them owning their college experience completely. I'll support them as much as I can but unfortunately, unless something crazy happens in our life, it won't be financially. I'm teaching them life lessons on how to be frugal, find good deals, and make their money last-- so there's my financial contribution.;)

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I am a bit put off by the term entitled as well. Are my children ENTITLED? NO.

 

Do I hope to pay for their college? Yes.

 

Here is how we have told our children we will pay for their college.......

 

We will pay for you to attend the local 4 year college tuition and fees. You can live at home for free. Anything above or beyond that is your choice and you will pay the difference. It is what we can afford comfortably. I think that is fair and more than many kids are offered.

 

And yes, it will come with stipulations: You are either going to school full time and applying yourself to the best of your ability or we stop paying.

 

They will then have the choice to go elsewhere and pay the difference if they so choose.

 

Dawn

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I voted other. We will pay for our daughters' bachelor's degrees because we feel they need them and don't want the girls to start out in debt. However, we don't feel it is an entitlement.

 

DD20 attends an in-state public college. She receives the Florida Bright Future scholarship and a scholarship from the college's foundation. As long as she maintains these scholarships (which she more than does :001_smile:) we will assume responsibility for the small supplementary student loans she needs. The study abroad semester is more expensive, about 3 times the price of one semester at home. She will pay the loans for that but we will help if we can.

 

She is preparing for a Fulbright scholarship for graduate school, her adviser believes she will qualify.

 

DD17 is looking at out of state private schools. :glare: If she can qualify for enough scholarships we will help with the remainder. We are prepared to match the amount we have provided for her sister. But if her choices are a lot more expensive she will need to kick in the difference.

 

We had a college savings account that would have allowed us to do this comfortably. It crashed. We had to decide that there was no use crying over spilt milk.

 

Covering their education is harder than it would have been before the downturn but we do not want them to start out in debt.

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I don't feel my children are "entitled" to it but I want to help them. Sorry trying not to be too edgy but the wording of the poll just put me on the defense. My mother didn't feel "entitled" to help me with college either, but then she didn't feel "entitled" to help me pay for clothing while in high school either. My parents refused to even give me their tax returns or fill at any paperwork when I tried to go to school. I was 18 I was on my own. I wasn't able to get any financial aid because they didn't feel they should help in any way shape or form even by giving info. So I didn't end up going to school. So pardon me if I am a bit peeved. I will be different with my dc.

 

My oldest ds has worked very hard in high school. I am encouraging him to get scholarships and will help him if he needs a loan. I will do everything possible to make college affordable for him. It's doubtful dh and I will be able to finance the whole thing but we will do what we can because oldest ds has worked hard and we want to be supportive.

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There is no way that we can afford to give five children each a full-ride college experience. We will *gladly* help them with grant and scholarship applications. They are welcome to live at home so long as they are attending school. There is no reason that they cannot work part-time to cover their books and other miscellaneous expenses as they arise.

 

ETA: My husband and I are both putting ourselves through school while raising a family and with dh in the military to boot. It's a challenge, sure, but we have yet to go into debt over it.

Edited by Pretty in Pink
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I agree with the others about objecting to the word "entitled".

 

We're doing the 2+2 plan with our oldest, which means 2 years at the community college and 2 years at a state public university. This has saved a lot of $$ for our family.

 

We've told our oldest that we'll pay for her educational expenses (tuition, room & board, and books). She is responsible for her own spending money. So if she wants a tube of toothpaste or to order a pizza, it's with her cash.

 

So she's working every summer as a camp counselor and using that money to keep her going during the school year.

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Other. I don't feel that anyone is entitled to go to college on mom and dad's dime.

 

We will be paying for what we can when the time comes. I do expect dd to get what she can with scholarships and grants. I also expect that she will have a part time job to help out personal expenses.

 

I plan on going back to work to help pay for college expenses, but there is only so much I'll be able to contribute by working in a shop. I'm too old now to go back into LE or firefighting so my employment options are limited.

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Growing up, it was sink or swim. Mom and Stepdad, even with their Vet status, didn't have money for college (and they were saving it for their son, not me). In fact, the government told them that they could afford my brother's education, so they went nearly 2million into debt for his education and living expenses (including shacked up girlfriend).

 

TWO MILLION?! What kind of school did he attend? Did they buy him a mansion to live in?

 

I routinely hear about couples with masters/PhD degrees coming away with $250K+ joint student loan debt, but two million shocks me.

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I voted other. We will pay for our daughters' bachelor's degrees because we feel they need them and don't want the girls to start out in debt. However, we don't feel it is an entitlement.

 

DD20 attends an in-state public college. She receives the Florida Bright Future scholarship and a scholarship from the college's foundation. As long as she maintains these scholarships (which she more than does :001_smile:) we will assume responsibility for the small supplementary student loans she needs. The study abroad semester is more expensive, about 3 times the price of one semester at home. She will pay the loans for that but we will help if we can.

 

She is preparing for a Fulbright scholarship for graduate school, her adviser believes she will qualify.

 

DD17 is looking at out of state private schools. :glare: If she can qualify for enough scholarships we will help with the remainder. We are prepared to match the amount we have provided for her sister. But if her choices are a lot more expensive she will need to kick in the difference.

 

We had a college savings account that would have allowed us to do this comfortably. It crashed. We had to decide that there was no use crying over spilt milk.

 

Covering their education is harder than it would have been before the downturn but we do not want them to start out in debt.

 

Depending on her choice of major, and which private schools she's looking into, they could be about the same as or sometimes even less expensive than in-state public schools. I went to a small, private, liberal arts college

in Tennessee, and it cost me less to live on campus with the highest level meal plan than it would have cost me to live at home & attend the only in-state public school I would even have considered at 18. (That would be The Ohio State University. Crazy expensive.)

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DH's parents refused to give him a dime towards college after DH decided to turn down a scholarship at the local state school in order to attend Stanford. My IL's took the money they had saved in his college fund and gave it to his younger siblings. They were willing to let him keep it for graduate school if he attended the local school so it wasn't about the money but rather about control. :glare:

 

Fortunately, DH was able to patch together enough in merit scholarships (primarily Army ROTC) to cover nearly all of the cost and was able to earn enough in part-time and summer jobs to graduate debt-free. But because of what happened to him, DH swore that he was going to help out his own kids as much as possible with their college.

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17 or 18 years is a long way away, but I will try to help my dd financially as much as possible. It isn't that she is entitled to it, it is that I want to give her all the opportunities that I can. That being said, I hope to raise a dd that is financially responsible and will work towards making her ready live her life. My dh and I consider it far more important to give her the best possible education for the first 18 years of her life than to give her $100000 to blow in 4 years.

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Our children will pay for their own college. #1 racked up scholarships and works. #2 is planning on the military. #3 is on track to be scholarship material. All work now as able. We allow them to live here rent free and help with gas so they can commute. Living on campus is OUT. That does mean they have quite long commutes but I'm telling them that builds character.:D

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We'll pay. I'll even own up to feeling that they're "entitled" because we do have the resources and both dh and I graduated debt-free from a top tier school. In reality, I only expect to pay a small fortune for dd's college, ds1 will be lucky to find even sheltered employment and ds2 will probably learn a trade.

 

ETA: After reading post 30 about being entitled to a college education, I'll cop to that belief as well. If we'd remained in Venezuela, dd would go to either a free public university or a very inexpensive Catholic university depending on the field she studied. I really admire Venezuela's university system. It requires quite a bit of effort and hardship from everyone who attends and emphasizes using your skills in public service. There's nothing quite like having to work in a dental clinic in the Amazon for your internship to make you appreciate your life and realize how difficult most people's lives are.

Edited by chiguirre
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No, actually I worded it that way intentionally and not due to my bias. I used to live around people that really thought that way and would word it exactly like that. They believed that ALL children are entitled to a college education, paid for by the parent, and any parent that didn't provide that was irresponsible. Yes, these same people looked down their noses at my husband who busted his tail in the factories making refridgerators and cheeses that they bought, warehouses that held all the cleaners they used daily, and building the roads that they drove on.

 

I appreciate those that have stated that they will help as they are financially able (heaven knows, if I had the money, I would do the same!), but don't feel their children are entitled to it unless they earned it. Thank you for responding and explaining. I voted no due to our inability to pay for college. Other is for the appropriate range of in between ;)

 

So then, the poll doesn't make sense as it is written - would your own vote have been different if you had a different financial situation? You just said you'd pay if you could afford it, but on the other hand, you also stated that you don't feel they're entitled. That is our position too, and I voted "other" for that reason.

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TWO MILLION?! What kind of school did he attend? Did they buy him a mansion to live in?

 

I routinely hear about couples with masters/PhD degrees coming away with $250K+ joint student loan debt, but two million shocks me.

Last I had heard, stepdad was $1.5mil in the hole and I don't doubt he probably paid for my brother's wedding as well. In highschool, stepdad paid for flying lessons (not counted in the 1.5). Then kid went to state U and had an apartment, car, and insurances paid for. He did work nights as a bartender. I don't understand how he racked up that kind of bill either.

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So then, the poll doesn't make sense as it is written - would your own vote have been different if you had a different financial situation? You just said you'd pay if you could afford it, but on the other hand, you also stated that you don't feel they're entitled. That is our position too, and I voted "other" for that reason.

My own vote would have been other if I had been able to pay some of it. I was curious as to people's thought processes on the matter, not just if they were paying.

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